Would it be beneficial for an internet startup to give money to twitter followers?


I need to generate some traffic for a internet startup and have been brainstorming ideas. My budget is limited, so I came up with the idea to give money to people who follow my startup on twitter. Not much, but possibly give $1 to $5 to one randomly selected twitter follower each day. Some days maybe more, depending on how it goes.

Has this type of marketing been done before? Would you recommend it? Would Twitter allow it?


Getting Started Marketing Twitter

asked Dec 16 '12 at 22:25
126 points
Top digital marketing agency for SEO, content marketing, and PR: Demand Roll
  • Twitter followers or Facebook group members should be people who LOVE your product. They don't shouldn't really need a prize to follow you. You do not need to pay to market yourself in the social media, that's it's main advantage. Social media marketing requires people who already love your product and are willing to interact with you. These interactions spread the word of your company and result in more customers. – Bhargav Patel 10 years ago
  • Don't give your money away. I'll go follow you if you were going to pay me and I don't even know what your businesses. Start a sweepstakes, run facebook ads, Google, Bing using free ad credits. Without knowing the kind of business you have we can't give you too many suggestions. Just don't give money to people just for following you. – Anagio 10 years ago

4 Answers


The type of your planned campaign is sweepstake. There has been a lot, and Twitter generally allows it with some guidelines(for both contests and sweepstakes): http://support.twitter.com/articles/68877-guidelines-for-contests-on-twitter Though allowed, I don't recommend it. Reasons:

  • You may attract much more users who is interested in this sweepstake instead of your business.
  • You still need traffic or resources to promote this campaign. The resource could be better used for business directly.
  • Seeing many people doing similar, the effect probably can't be so popular with low budget.
  • There is some extra work needed for setting up this campaign especially for fair rules. More hassle than benefit IMO.

Some ideas just for your reference

  • Create free resources useful to your target audience. Suggest or force their following you when getting this resource.
  • Use ads, paid tweets etc to promote this resource.
answered Dec 17 '12 at 00:40
Billy Chan
1,179 points
  • Sweepstakes, contests etc are great. I see more and more of them on facebook every month – Anagio 10 years ago


I agree with Billy Chan. This strategy isn't going to produce any results for you. It will end up being a waste of time.

You state that your goal is to generate traffic to your site. But this isn't going to do it. If you get any people to follow you based on this, they won't be the least bit interested in engaging with you. They will just be interested in the money, so it's not going to generate any traffic to your site.

Additionally, a chance to be randomly selected to win $1 to $5 is about as weak an incentive as I can think of. A guaranteed $1 to $5 prize is already a super weak prize, but now you're reducing that even more by not even guaranteeing that miniscule amount. I seriously doubt you'll get anyone to bite with such a weak offer.

Plus consider that it's not just the prize money that it's going to cost you. The overhead associated with setting up and managing the contest will cost you more than the prize itself.

answered Dec 17 '12 at 02:19
Zuly Gonzalez
9,194 points


No! I run a social media marketing company and one of my clients got somewhat results, around 300 followers, doing that on Twitter. Then one of the followers tweeted "who got paid by __ to follow @_ _" and all her following favorited the comment.

answered Jan 1 '13 at 10:10
Mike Tibebu
11 points


I have seen people give away iPads, etc every month, or every follower milestone, but that just seems to get them followers who want a free iPad. Nobody cares about the message.

If you have to bribe people to follow you, you're doing something wrong, IMHO, although of course, YMMV.

answered Dec 19 '12 at 22:02
Steve Jones
3,239 points

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